advice for new moms Archives - 10 to 12 Baby Lounge

10 Ways to Survive Traveling with a Baby

Guest Written By: Elle Sikorski 
Instagram: @ellevatehealth 
Blog: www.ellevatehealth.com

So long to the days when your biggest travel worry was whether your bag exceeded the allowable weight limit. As new moms, we’ve got a whole new set of concerns when it comes to traveling. In fact, the thought of going anywhere with your infant is one that can send any parent into a panic. Worried about what to pack, anxious about what the other passengers may think when baby is crying, and most importantly, concerned for the disruption of baby’s schedule are just a few of the many concerns a new mom will have while trip-planning. Call me crazy, but when my son, Benjamin, was just 16 weeks old, he, my husband and I took our first trip to Turks and Caicos. Two weeks later, Benjamin, my husband and I boarded an international flight to Poland for a week-long visit with family —on the way back it was just Ben and I alone. If my husband were able to come, he would have. We both felt that it was important for my family to meet Benjamin at this early age. When it comes to travel, I have done my fair share, however, traveling with a baby was a completely new challenge. It was crazy, memorable and fun! So, if you are a new mom and have been avoiding traveling with your baby, I can assure you that is not the nightmare you imagine it will be. Here’s what I learned about traveling with a baby and what I would like to pass on to other jet-setting mamas. 

1. Roll baby’s clothes when packing.

First, arrange all the clothes by outfit, then get rolling. Rolling saves you a TON of space in the suitcase. I brought one large suitcase for the both of us (and the diaper bag as my carry-on). If you want to be even more organized, purchase fold-up fabric storage boxes to group each item of clothing in. For example, pajamas in one box and onesies, socks and bibs in the other. Once they are rolled and packed in boxes, place into your suitcase. Voila! There you have a more organized space for both yours’ and baby’s clothes. 

2. Pack dark clothes for baby. 

Let’s face it… babies are messy eaters. Whether baby spits up his milk, or more of his pureed carrots end up on his shirt than in his belly, outfit changes happen often. That’s why I like to pack darker clothes. If baby has a minor spill, it will be less visible on dark clothing. 

3. Airbnb > Hotels. 

Pre-baby, my husband and I never really considered renting an apartment or entire home while traveling. We would always just find the best hotel, in the best location, with the intention of spending very little time in our room. Fast forward to today. Airbnb over a hotel any day! We always look for an Airbnb or rented apartment with a washer, dryer and kitchenette. With this added luxury, we are able to enjoy ourselves a little better – and Benjamin too! There’s more space, laundry available (which means packing less clothes), and the option to cook healthy meals. 

4. Bring a travel stroller. 

Although baby wearing is a wonderful option for strolling around the airport, at some point during your vacation, you will need a stroller. Whether you are out exploring and baby needs to lay down, or you’re tired of wearing baby on your chest, a stroller is a must. When traveling with a baby, I highly recommend using a travel stroller system. You could take your everyday stroller, however, it would probably be quite heavy to lug around. A lightweight travel stroller, on the other hand, will have a compact, one-handed fold and is generally easier to stow out of the way in small rooms or restaurants. There are also many travel strollers systems designed to accommodate infants. These strollers are specifically made with car seat insert options, so that parents don’t have to worry about their little one being too small for the stroller itself. 

5. Board early. 

Thankfully, most airlines will allow families with small children to board first. Boarding early will give you a few extra minutes to get your baby comfortable while the plane is empty. You’ll also get first dibs at the overhead compartment that’s directly above your seat. 

6. Find empty seats on the plane. 

If possible, and only after everyone has taken their seats, ask if there are any extra empty seats next to one another. This may seem like a long shot on packed planes, but there’s no harm in asking. You may even get lucky and find an empty bulkhead seat for extra leg room and bassinet space. 

7. Feed during take off & landing. 

During airline travel, it’s completely normal for your baby to become restless at take off and landing. The pressure on a baby’s little ears can be especially harsh during these changes in altitude. Whether you’re nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, feeding them during take off and landing will ensure comfort, easing any added pressure to their precious ears.

8. Bring baby’s favourite toy. 

Bring 1-2 of your baby’s favorite toys to keep them comfortable. The familiarity of a favourite toy when in a rather unfamiliar place can go a long way. For Benjamin, it was his “bearsys.” I brought two in case one happened to get lost during travel.  

9. Don’t bring a pack n’ play. 

Every place I’ve ever traveled to has been able to provide a pack n’ play or a portable cot for baby to sleep in. All it takes is an email or phone call ahead of time to reserve one. Don’t lug one with you if you don’t have to! Even Airbnb’s often have them available (just bring a clean fitted sheet).  

10. Find a local babysitter. 

I obviously didn’t need to do this during my trip to Poland, but it’s something my husband and I have done on other trips we’ve taken with Benjamin. Finding a local babysitter can be a great way to get away for a dinner date sans baby — if you’re comfortable with it, that is. So, there you have it. I’m living proof that it’s possible to survive traveling with a baby. I hope these ten tips can help make your next journey with baby a little easier and a lot more fun!

5 Ways to Incite Romance After Baby

Making time for your partner after baby

The arrival of your newest little one is an adjustment for the whole family. Suddenly your old routine gets completely flipped around by a small, sweet, snuggly baby. When it comes to romance, a new baby can actually be a great time for you and your partner to work on ways to incite romance after baby.

Talk About It

You’ve heard it before, but communication truly is key in relationships. Before baby comes, have the discussion with your partner about how you want to continue making time for them post-baby. Brainstorm some ideas that will work for you, and think through ways you can both try them when the baby gets here. If that ship has already sailed, you can still bring it up to your partner. Every couple is different, and so are solutions for finding time for romance after baby arrives.

You can bridge the conversation with things like, “how can we spend some more time romantic together?” and “let’s find a way to incorporate romance again.”

Avoid phrases like “I need you to give me more attention” or “why aren’t we romantic anymore?”. These can incite feelings of guilt and resentment in your partner. Rest assured that every couple has their period of adjustment to find new expressions of romance after baby that work for them.

Stick to the Plan

If you and your partner make plans to spend time together, at times it is going to be tempting to cancel. Things come up, it’s hard to leave the house and making time for each other takes more work than it used to. However, you need follow through, and show each other that spending quality time is important. Your relationship and well-being will benefit from the investment.

Short and Sweet

In the first few months and weeks, romance after baby can be extremely hard to achieve. Plan activities that take you and your partner out of the house for small increments of time. Taking the baby for a walk in the stroller during her nap time is a great way to check in and chat with your spouse. Enjoying a cup of coffee or a glass of wine is also a great way to reconnect without being away for too long. Take up your relatives on the offer to babysit, or hire a sitter for an hour and half. Romance after baby doesn’t have to mean dinner and a long movie.

5 Minutes a Day

Try incorporating the 5 minutes a day rule. For just 5 minutes each day, sit down and check in with your partner. Try to be completely present and listen when they speak. Use this time to speak up about any thing that’s on your mind, or even to plan your next date night. Try to do this when the baby is asleep so your attention isn’t diverted. Everyone can fit in 5 minutes of romance after baby.

Small Gestures

Is there a little something that you did for your partner pre-baby that you can bring back now? They will appreciate the thoughtfulness and reminder of the love you strongly share. Write a post-it note, give a five minute shoulder massage, cook dinner, call for no reason. It’s the little things that truly count when it comes to romance after baby.

Don’t Panic! Hints to Help You Survive a Colicky Baby

Guest Written By: Jess Procter 
Instagram: @north_west_jess
Blog: www.northwestjess.com

Don’t Panic! Hints to Help You Survive a Colicky Baby

Pregnancy can feel like an eternity and by the end of it we feel large, tired and impatient to meet the baby that we know will change our lives – and sleep schedules – forever. It’s so disheartening to bring home a new baby expecting sleepy cuddles and to get hours of inconsolable crying instead; but you’re not alone! So many of us are experiencing or have survived a colicky baby. There isn’t much that makes it easier but there are a few things I learned in my months as a “Colic Mama”. I hope some of them can help you survive, too. 

Adjust Your Expectations

This is number one for most mamas of severely fussy babies. The hardest thing can be to separate your reality from what you thought your Fourth Trimester was going to look like – or what it looks like for your friends or the social media moms you follow. No one expects life with a newborn to be easy but not many mamas expect colic, either. Comparison is truly the thief of joy for parents of a fussy kid, so let go of what you thought would happen and deal, to the best of your ability, with what is happening. Every phase passes.

Lean On Your Village

If you’re not the type to easily accept help this can be a lot easier said than done, but if someone close to you offers help of any kind, take it! Give explicit instructions and don’t be shy – maybe you need your laundry done or a delivery of groceries picked up. Maybe you’d appreciate someone coming over just to hold your screaming child so you can shower. Maybe you want a friend to leave a pizza and a bottle of wine on your doorstep. Accept what you feel comfortable accepting and politely decline what you don’t. 

Give Yourself the Grace to Try and Figure it Out

Even if you don’t have a particularly fussy baby it can take a few months to find out what a newborn likes and doesn’t like. Even veteran moms with five kids have to figure it out with every new babe. A certain type of white noise, that one movement that helps them fall asleep, a baby carrier, a stroller or car ride. It might take a long time to find the thing that works but when you find it and gain some semblance of peace for even half an hour you feel like you just might be able to get through that newborn stage after all! Then again, if you’ve experienced a truly colicky baby you know that sometimes nothing works, no matter how many well-meaning moms swear it worked for their own fussy babe. In that case, just survive. It gets better. Promise. In the meantime, try the gas drops. Try bouncing on a yoga ball. You just never know. 

Be Selfish

This is a time of survival. Don’t feel obligated to cater to others or do things you don’t want to do because you feel like you “should;” there’ll be plenty of time for that later! For now stay home, turn down invitations that make you feel overwhelmed, and don’t worry about putting your life on hold as long as you need to. Everyone will understand. 

Find Like-Minded Parents

We experienced severe colic with my firstborn that lasted for four months and didn’t dissipate completely until she was about six months old. Many of my close friends and family members were having their own babies at that time and I felt so isolated seeing how easily they seemed to manage their lives. Finally I found a Facebook group for parents of spirited and high-needs children and instantly felt understood. Knowing that others were going through something similar didn’t make the days or nights any easier for us but it definitely helped me understand that my child wasn’t fussy because of anything I was doing, she was just having a (much) harder time adjusting to life outside of the womb. Having someone to text in the middle of the night can be bolstering, too.

It’s Okay to Put the Baby Down

There are times when it will be crucial for you to get a break from a screaming baby but circumstances may not permit one. Maybe your partner works long hours, you don’t have a partner, or no friends are available to help out. If your baby has been crying for a very long time and you need to take a few minutes to collect yourself and give your weary arms a break, don’t feel guilty about needing to put the baby down! If she has been fed and changed and is still crying, put her in her crib or another safe place and make yourself a coffee or a quick lunch. As mothers we often feel guilty if we don’t tend to our fussing child every second of the day but she will learn to settle herself eventually and a few minutes here and there is a great start toward her own independence, especially if it saves your own sanity. 

Make Time for Yourself

Obviously during the Fourth Trimester it’s hard enough to find time to sleep, let alone engaging in all of your pre-baby hobbies. But even if you only get fifteen minutes a day you can always find small ways to indulge in a little self care (sometimes very small ways). Short trips to a corner coffee shop for a latte. A few minutes writing in your journal. A phone call to someone who provides a listening ear or a little perspective. A quick bath. One episode of a favorite TV show or podcast while nursing. Invest in a super soft robe or blanket to make those middle-of-the-night feeds feel like less of an obligation and more of an opportunity for comfort.

Most importantly: It’s not you, it’s the baby! It’s nearly impossible not to internalize blame when you experience your newborn seemingly rejecting every attempt to soothe her cries, but it truly isn’t anything that you did or did not do. Colic is awful and it can feel never-ending but it really is such a short time in the scheme of you and your baby’s relationship. As every parent knows, everything is a phase and this one will pass just as all the others do. Soon you’ll find you’re enjoying parenthood a little more every day, and maybe even one day doing the unthinkable – entertaining the idea of having another one! For now, just take a deep breath and go easy on yourself. Good luck!

Why Is It Important To Enforce Self Care For Moms?

Why is it important to enforce self care for moms?

Self care for moms is often too easily overlooked. As a caregiver, it can be hard to feel justified about carving out space to nurture your own needs and wants. How can you afford to set time aside between juggling the schedules and responsibilities of the rest of your family and possibly a career on top of everything? While it may seem virtually impossible that self care for moms could take precedence, enforcing that time for yourself is healthy. Not only does it allow you to have a break, but it allows you to perform everyday tasks more efficiently. Without time to relax, you are more prone to become frustrated and lose energy. By default, by restoring your energy levels, you are not only doing yourself a favor, but you are helping out your whole family. After spending time alone, you will feel rejuvenated, be able to improve your concentration and unwind. Self care for moms is essential.

How to enforce self care for moms?

Our advice for new moms is not to put off self care, but to enforce it early on. This early integration sets a standard of routine and normalcy that can be expected by you and your family. Ultimately “mommy-time” becomes second nature to all. Of all the benefits associated with prioritizing self care for moms, once the practice becomes a habit, you will start to notice improvements in how you experience those little moments that might otherwise feel stressful or difficult.

Our first piece of advice for new moms is to eliminate or reduce unnecessary tasks. Cutting down the amount of time spent on daily activities can be very beneficial. For example, making a list of what needs to be done during the week and what on that list can be outsourced such as using an app for grocery shopping, or asking for help with cooking, cleaning or laundry can contribute to more valuable personal time. Being practical and reasonable about your time is just as important. Perfectionism does not exist, and rather than feeling obliged to keep the house spotless or prepare an elaborate family meal nightly, give yourself the benefit of using moderation to allow yourself more free time.

Once you have eliminated a few things from your day, it is time to schedule in self care. Don’t just think about self care, write specific times and activities down in your planner. This may seem unnecessary, but if you decide when to enforce time for yourself, it is much more likely to happen. Additionally, if you want to work with a personal trainer or spend time with a friend, schedule it in advance. By looping in another person, you create accountability for self care. You can also partner with another mother and plan your self care time together. Instead of a workout buddy, find a “self care buddy.”

What are the benefits of self care for moms?

Some benefits of self care for moms include stress release, increased clarity of thoughts and improved emotional health. These benefits lead to healthier relationships amongst your family, and by allowing your physical body to relax, you can prevent chronic stress and improve your quality of sleep. In addition, you will find yourself feeling less irritable, meaning you will be able to more thoroughly enjoy time spent with your kids.

By enforcing time for yourself, you start to build a support system. It is important for your kids to interact with a variety of different people. Try leaving the kids with their dad or a grandparent when possible while you enjoy a spa day with your girlfriends or hide away with a good book. This creates variability in your children’s lives. Self care for moms is a win-win; Your kids are happier because their momma is more joyful and present, and you are happier because you are giving yourself the gift of balance.

Next time you begin to feel guilty or uncertain about carving time for your own self care, remember that everyone benefits: you, your partner and your kids. Our best advice for new moms is to be aware that your needs are intertwined with your children’s. You can’t fully care for another unless you care for yourself. Be an example for your family and display self care.

Why Is Touch So Important To Babies?

Why Is Touch So Important To Babies?

As your newborn begins to move and grow, learning from the sense of touch is incredibly important. Parents and caregivers will often introduce a host of different textures during “touch time” or other times of play. But why is this sense of touch so important for babies?

The role of touch

Infants are particularly sensitive to touch. As their minds grow, differentiating between textures and surfaces is essential to their development and awareness. After all, it’s estimated that your baby’s brain will more than double in size within the first year. As such, parents will introduce their babies to a number of different objects to feel. Many caregivers will play with their baby on a host of different surfaces as well.

Touch also extends to your child’s palate as well. Introducing new textures of food is often difficult for new parents, but interesting textures are necessary for the growth and development of your child. On top of that, physical closeness is important in growing the bond between parent and child. The sense of touch is a startlingly important sense for babies for a host of reasons.

Skin sensitivity

For better or worse, babies also have incredibly sensitive skin. There’s no better feeling than squishing a baby’s soft leg only to feel the skin bounce back with vitality.

Unfortunately, this perfect skin is still in the early stages of its development. As such, your baby might experience a number of rashes, irritations, and dryness during their first few years of life. While this is no cause for alarm, it’s something to be aware of as a new mother. They’re also more sensitive to the sun, inclement weather, and the cold. The need for protection in these early years is vital to your baby’s health.

Tips for touch

Protecting your baby’s skin is essential. As such, you should always wash new clothing, cashmere baby gifts, and baby blankets you receive as gifts for first-time mothers. On top of that, you should ensure your own clothing is baby-friendly. That includes any breastfeeding wraps or breastfeeding covers that may come into contact with your baby’s sensitive skin.

When you introduce new materials and textures to your baby, ensure you don’t give them items that are easy to swallow and choke on. Monitoring touch time is essential when you want to ensure the safety and comfort of your child. You should give them a mix of hard items, rough items, and especially soft items, like the plush comfort of a cashmere baby blanket.

Cashmere baby gifts are the perfect present babies and mothers alike. Not only do babies love the feeling of a soft cashmere baby wrap, but they will be able to enjoy them for years to come. For the best premium cashmere baby gifts for the new mother, think 10 To 12 Baby Lounge today!

The Art Of Gift Wrapping

The Art Of Gift Wrapping

If you’re planning on giving the new mommy in your life a luxury gift, the presentation must be just as beautiful as the gift inside. This can be especially difficult if you’re struggling to wrap plush cashmere baby gifts or a soft baby blanket set. 

Here are some essential tips to make your gift wrapping — almost — as good as the present inside.

Choose great wrapping paper

Your premium baby gifts deserve the best wrapping paper on the market. Thin wrapping paper is prone to creasing or wrinkling in unexpected places, or even tearing. This often ruins the entire presentation of your gift. 

Thick wrapping paper with a beautiful design is the best option to present your baby blanket gift. It’s easier to control creases during the wrapping process and won’t tear like other flimsy gift wraps. On top of that, the thick paper will feel rich and luxurious to the touch when she opens her present. Just be sure to place your baby blanket gift on the paper before you cut — this will give you the perfect amount of paper to cover the present. Using too much wrapping paper is a common beginner’s mistake.

When in doubt, use a box

If you’re wrapping a difficult object like a cashmere wrap for babies or a breastfeeding cover, you might want to put it in a box before you wrap it. Loose gifts made from cashmere are more prone to tearing and puncturing the wrapping paper. This can be a huge detriment to both the overall look of your gift and the surprise gift inside!

Avoid the potential for punctures by placing flexible or fragile items in a rigid box. Not only will this give you a clean crease when you wrap your present, but it will also be easier to transport if you have to travel for the holidays.

If wrapping a box is still beyond your gift wrapping capabilities, then use the Internet to your advantage. Video sharing sites like Youtube have thousands of video tutorials with easy-to-understand, step-by-step instructions.

…Or use a bag!

Bags are a wonderful gift option because you can play with different colors and patterns. They’re easy to carry and you can fill a bag with just about anything. This makes them a great option for last-minute gifts or multiple items for twins. While twins only occur in four out of every 1,000 live births, this is still a great option for any new mom. Try experimenting with different paper tissue to create a fun look for the holidays.

The new mom in your life will love it when she opens her new premium baby gifts. When you have trouble with the art of gift wrapping, try these tips to improve your presentation.

Mommy Appreciation Sundays Now Back With Mommy and Baby Freebies!

If you thought we were done celebrating mamas, think again. Mommy Appreciation Sundays are back at 10 to 12 Baby Lounge with mommy and baby freebies and more to come. We had so much fun with the campaign over the summer, growing our community of mommies, and got such rewarding feedback that we just can’t let it go.

A quick recap…

If you missed our first round of Mommy Appreciation Sundays or need a quick reminder of what it is, we’re happy to fill you in!

Mommies work a never-ending job without getting paid, and rarely even get acknowledged for much of what they do. They ask for almost nothing in return, prioritizing others’ needs before their own. 10 to 12 is here to give those moms a little extra attention and TLC, just to let them know how valued and appreciated they really are. We disagree with having only one day a year to truly celebrate these superwomen; we’re doing it every month!

What it includes

How exactly do we celebrate Mommy Appreciation Sundays, you ask? For starters, our social medias will be more centered around mommies, including inspirational quotes, images, and stories. We will be providing tips for new and veteran mommies alike. We want 10 to 12 Baby Lounge to feel like a friend, a retreat, a place that makes mommies feel extra special, because they are. Our goal is to spread that message throughout our Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, blog posts, etc.

In addition, similar to our previous Mommy Appreciation Sundays campaign, we will be doing special giveaways, because mommy and baby freebies are a wonderfully unexpected treat, especially when they’re made from the world’s softest cashmere! Upon visiting 10 to 12’s website, you will be greeted with a pop-up. It gives you the opportunity to enter your email so you can receive a special $25 gift card that will be delivered to your inbox immediately. This gift card can be used on any 10 to 12 Baby Lounge products, with the exception of our new Llama and Cacti plush toys. However, we are thrilled to announce our new fall line that includes multiple new gift sets, complete with the very cutest baby accessories from cashmere baby shoes to swaddle blanket sets. Our Happy Mommy, Happy Me cashmere gift set is a favorite amongst breastfeeding mommies, and it is sure to reign you the ultimate baby shower gift bearer amongst your friends.

But wait…there’s more. If you provide your email address to receive the $25 gift card to apply toward your next purchase, you will automatically opt-in to a raffle to win cashmere mommy and baby freebies during that month. On the first Sunday of each month, beginning in September, we will select a winner, in celebration of Mommy Appreciation Sundays. The raffle prize will change each month, but for the month of September, it will be one of our Stretch Me swaddle blankets, usually priced at $158! Spread the word to your new mommy friends! No purchase is required to win*. We only strive to give back to our community of mommies t0 help them feel more supported.

Why is this so important to us?

As a brand that has experienced mothers on the team, we understand the needs and feelings that are common amongst moms. Mommy Appreciation Sundays is not only about showing mommy appreciation by giving them special deals – it’s about creating a community of mommies who can be there for each other. As moms, we can celebrate each other’s victories, hold each other up during the tough parts, and encourage each other on our journeys as mothers. Thats why we loved sharing our live event so much this past summer; moms were able to make connections with each other, mommy bloggers, mom influencers, our non-profit partner Baby2Baby and press who happen to be mothers themselves. We hope to continue to share rewarding experiences and treats with our growing community of mommies, and welcome new ideas in the comments below! Stay tuned for more details on that in the coming months as Mommy Appreciation Sundays continues to evolve.

In the meantime, we hope you take advantage of the opportunities for mommy and baby freebies this fall by entering into our monthly drawings along with your mommy pals, and we hope we can be a place of support and love through #MOMMYAPPRECIATIONSUNDAYS.

For the Love of Books: Benefits of Taking Baby to the Library

Before we talk about the benefits of taking baby to the library, can I just take a moment to confess something? I LOVE the smell of the library! (And bowling alleys, but that’s a story for another day). There’s something about it that really gets to me. The musty smell of old books; all that knowledge and adventure and imagination sitting on the shelves. A value that only comes to be realized with age. When I step through those doors, I am hit with a very specific sense of joy and nostalgia; as if I am being transported to my first memories of being in the library. I’m a pre-teen all over again, browsing the young adult section for my next literary escape! How many hours have I spent in those aisles? Looking for something specific, or looking for nothing in particular at all? That’s what’s so great about the library, there’s no limit to how long you can walk the aisles (well, unless of course they are closing) and there’s no obligation to take anything home, or to take just one thing home. I never met a library I didn’t like!   

 

Taking Baby to the Library

Now that I got that out of my system, let’s talk about the benefits of taking baby to the library. As you may have figured out by now, I’m a bit of a fan of public libraries. So, of course, I want to be able to instill that same sense of love for books and the buildings that house them in my sweet baby boy.

Books and reading have been a part of my life as far back as I can remember. So much so, that I have had a box of my favorite children’s books that has moved with me to every new home I’ve had since I first left mom & dad’s house all those years ago. My husband and I even started collecting our favorite children’s books and young adult novels long before we started trying to get pregnant!

So, when our baby boy was born, I couldn’t wait to take him to the library for the first time. Lucky for us, we have a public library within walking distance from our house! Sure, we have a lot of books at home, and we got some wonderful ones as gifts before baby arrived. But going to the library is a whole different experience that is just as valuable as the reading of the books themselves.

 

A Perfect Mommy & Baby Outing

One of the first benefits of taking baby to the library, is that it’s just a fun way to get out of the house! Our first trip to the library happened when my son was 8 weeks old; I know this because I snapped a pic on my phone to document the event. At this point in my maternity leave, I was feeling stronger and well-rested (my newborn was sleeping 8 hours at night…it didn’t last very long) but I was also starting to feel a bit stir-crazy. It felt so good to get some fresh air, take a walk, and end up in one of my favorite places with my little guy. Wearing him in a sling, we walked up and down the aisles. I read him the titles and combed through the pages. At this stage, you don’t even need to be in the kid’s section because he’s too young to have an opinion and it’s more about the time spent together and engaging his curiosity about language. He is learning about the world around him, so any experience can be a worthy experience, which just begins to touch on the many benefits of taking baby to the library. For the record, I was in the kid’s section because I was just too excited for him to fall in love with stories! We did this every week those first few months, each time checking out a handful of books to take home with us. Our first books were high contrast sensory books for baby. One of our favorite baby books : Look Look! By Peter Linenthal.

 

Borrow Before you Buy

Another great advantage to being a library patron is having a chance to explore a lot of books before you pick out your favorite baby books. You and baby can pull as many books off the shelf as your heart desires, thumb through the pages, take a few home, read them together in your most comfy chair, and then decide which ones you just can’t live without. Sure, we’d all love to have floor to ceiling bookshelves in every room of the house for our extensive book collections (or maybe that’s just me) but the reality is that’s just not very practical. By checking them out at the library first, you can really hone baby’s and your taste. Once you find a keeper, you can then buy it at your favorite local bookshop or online retailer. You’ll end up with a priceless collection of your favorite baby books, instead of a mountain of books you could never find room for or that get left on the shelf untouched for years. Our favorite library find to date : Cloudette by Tom Lichtenheld about a little cloud who believed she was meant for something big!

 

Storytime at the Library

Visiting the local public library doesn’t always have to be just about mommy & baby either. One of the greatest things about your local public library is that it probably has a storytime schedule; a time during the week where local kiddos can gather round and listen to some of their favorite children’s books read out loud by a friendly library volunteer. What’s great about storytime is that baby can enjoy it now, and continue to grow and find new joy in it is as he gets older. The things that excite him now have evolved from even a month ago, and will continue to do so for years to come. Sure, at this exact point in time, he may seem more interested in standing and cruising along the bookshelves than sitting and listening to Mr. Jeffries read a story; but I know that he is hearing the words dance around the air around him and absorbing so much from the experience.

Among the benefits of taking baby to the library, storytime is also a great chance to meet other neighborhood local mommies and babies who are in this great adventure with you. If you’re anything like me, you may find it a challenge to make new mommy friends. You know, the kind of mommy friends that aren’t related to you. So storytime at the public library could be a good way to get your feet wet! They probably live nearby, and they probably have a similar schedule since you are there at the same time. Plus, you know that you share the same value of books and learning. Maybe on the first day, you just smile and make friendly conversation. As you start to see each other more regularly, you become more comfortable with each other and may find common interests or experiences. Before you know it, you’ve found a new friend for you and a playdate for your little one. Remember, babies need socialization too! Even if you only ever see each other at the library, it can be meaningful for both of you to make those connections.

 

Best Gifts for First Time Moms

There are not many things more intimidating than being a first time mommy. It can seem like the only way to learn what to do is to pretend like you actually know what you’re doing for the sake of your baby and the sake of your own sense of personal balance. Fake it ’till you make it, right?

Luckily, there are some new items at 10 to 12 Baby Lounge that can make the first time mommy life a little bit easier and a whole lot cozier for the loving new mommies and babies in your life. Our timeless cashmere pieces for mommy and baby make the best gifts for first time moms, perfect gifts for baby showers or for no occasion at all! In fact, go ahead and indulge yourself in them as well. Once you give one as a gift, no doubt you will want to covet them for yourself and your own little one too. From the ultimate baby security blankets to heartwarming gift sets with unique pieces like cashmere baby booties, here are a few of our favorite best gifts for first time moms!

Swaddle Blankets

Swaddling is one of the most important things to master as a new mama. There are countless reasons to swaddle your baby, and do it correctly. It stimulates sleep continuity, which is a major goal for a new mom. When swaddled the right way, your baby will likely sleep better and longer. Because they will be all bundled up, they won’t be able to startle themselves awake with a flailing arm or the twitch of a leg. It is also a very effective soothing technique. While they may fuss a bit initially, research has shown a large reduction in crying when babies are swaddled properly. The most important reason for swaddling is that it reduces the chance of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. When swaddled, a baby has much smaller chance of somehow covering their heads with a pillow or blankets, or rolling over onto their stomach, both of which can potentially be fatal.

10 to 12’s new ‘Stretch Me’ Blanket Set includes the perfect swaddle blanket for little ones. It is made of the highest quality cashmere, silk, and wool, creating the ideal stretchiness, warmth, and comfort that a baby should get from a swaddle blanket. The vast benefits of the Stretch Me blanket are actually in its name! The majority of swaddle blankets are restrictive and reinforce sleeping in an unusual position, which can put an infant at risk for hip dysplasia and impeded breathing. The Stretch Me blanket stays secure while allowing for natural joint mobility, meaning that baby gets all the benefits of swaddling without the potential hazards of most swaddle blankets. Not only that, but the set also comes with a cashmere plush Gavin or Kiwi toy that can accompany a little one on all sleeping endeavors. This is by far one of the best gifts for first time moms. Her baby will literally be a bundle of joy!

Security Blankets

Baby security blankets are of large importance of their own. They are the ultimate transitional objects for babies to grow their independence, meant to mimic the effects of a mother’s womb for the baby. Particularly during the “fourth trimester,” what we call months 10 to 12, a baby can start to feel confused and overwhelmed by the stimulus outside mommy’s belly, deeming baby security blankets ideal gifts for first time moms to comfort their little ones.

You may know of 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s Gavin the Goat and Kiwi the Cat timeless cashmere baby blankets, but 10 to 12 Baby Lounge has recently introduced two more friends to the family! Meet Liam the Lion and Penelope the Poodle. These are the same beautiful, 100% machine-washable, non-toxic cashmere blankets, with exciting new friends to choose from to match each little one’s personality. These baby blankets include unique personal touches; each comes with a story booklet about the character on the blanket, hand embroidery and bright pom poms that promote sensory play, so baby can learn about their new friend as they grow up together!

Cashmere Baby Booties

New mamas are naturally protective and careful about their babies, and therefore want them to be as warm and protected as possible when going out into the big, new world. 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s new Stepping Out Deluxe Cashmere Gift Set has everything little ones need to be cozy and comfy, and it comes in both Foggy grey and Ivory white. This too-cute-to-be-true set for newborns includes a Baby Wrap, Baby Hat, Baby Mittens and 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s NEW gold or silver bottomed cashmere shoes. Our cashmere shoes are lined with butter-soft genuine leather with an adjustable strap, and all shoes are made in Portugal still following 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s strict standard for eco-friendly production. All of these clothing items are a blend of the finest cashmere and cotton, ensuring the most comfort and lounge-chic style for little ones. These all-inclusive sets have everything a new baby will need for their first adventures out into the world, making them genius gifts for first time moms. Can you think of a more keepsake first pair of shoes to gift?!

And with that, we hope you feel more prepared to provide your friends and loved ones with the best gifts for first time moms. The options don’t stop here, though. 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s new fall line is full of luxurious new products for mommies and babies alike!

Why Baby Security Blankets Are So Important

Babies are warm, snuggly little things that look even cuter when bundled up in warm, snuggly little blankets. Sometimes you feel like you’re 6 years old again, toting around your little baby doll all wrapped up in a cozy package. But no, now your babies are real, and there are real, important reasons for them to have baby security blankets that go far beyond simply looking cute and cozy. Here are the top reasons why baby security blankets are a necessity.

Transitional Object

Around three months old, a baby will start to realize that she and her mother are two separate beings. Before that, the baby sees her mother as an extension of herself. Because of this, the baby will likely panic and get upset when their mother leaves. Baby security blankets will help ease this process of the baby transitioning from dependence to independence. If the baby is holding their security blanket while their mother is holding them, the baby will begin to associate the blanket with their mother. It is a source of comfort and a symbol of mommy’s presence. When mom leaves her baby’s side, the baby is likely to panic and cry less because they have the security of the blanket and the reminder of mommy.

This transitional object will stay with your baby for years, as the transition process becomes more drastic while little ones are growing up. While they may not need the security blanket like they did as infants, it is common for children not to let go of their attachment to the transitional object until their pre-teenage years; some even keep them around as keepsakes or sentimental items to save for their own children.

Sleep!

Separation anxiety between baby and mama, especially at night time, will start hitting hard around six or seven months. This is another reason to introduce baby security blankets closer to three months; the baby will feel significantly attached and comforted by the blanket by the time the separation anxiety moves in.

Unless there is something truly wrong and the baby needs to be cared for, baby security blankets will do the trick when the baby wakes up upset and looking for mama. Instead of mom having to go comfort the baby, the little one will find that she has the security blanket that they associate with her mom, and they’ll likely be soothed back to sleep.

General Adjustments

Believe it or not, baby security blankets can also improve a baby’s temperament as they grow up. Research has shown that infants that grow up with a security blanket or object are better adjusted when it comes to happiness, attention, and impulsivity than those without security blankets.

Some parents do have concerns, like baby security blankets leading to habits like thumb sucking or too much of an attachment to their security objects. However, these are just habits that pass with time. They are stress coping mechanisms for little ones, and as they grow up, they will replace these mechanisms with new, more mature ones.

Check out 10 to 12 Baby Lounge’s line of cashmere baby blankets, a perfect source of security for your precious little one. They are all 100% cashmere, machine-washable, and free of dyes to ensure your baby is getting the very best.

 

#MommyAppreciationSunday!

“Mothers deserve more love & recognition than just one Mother’s Day.”
This Sunday between 10am and 12pm, we're giving away 3 FREE 'Cashmere Baby Sets' with code MOMMYAPPRECIATION at checkout! If you're not one of the lucky 3, we're still offering 40% off ALL cashmere baby and mommy gifts all day on Sunday!

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